If you’re traveling internationally, boy, do we have the place for you to go! An unforgettable adventure will bring you to the breathtaking destination of La Tavola Marche in Italy. La Tavola Marche is a restaurant, inn, and cooking school with an organic farm, locally sourcing everything they don’t grow or produce from flour to wine. Here, they have the variety of coastal fruits of the sea, intensively farmed midlands and the wild harvest of the mountains. Jason Bartner, the Executive Chef, Culinary Instructor and the Founder of La Tavola Marche creates simple, seasonal dishes from the farm to the table. Chef Bartner and his culinarily enthused guests are able walk a hundred feet from the house to pick fresh, seasonally and locally grown ingredients for that evening’s dinner. Chef Bartner was able to tell us about the fresh ingredients and his passion for La Tavola Marche.
TT: What produce items from your garden are being harvested at this time?
CB- Pumpkins, hard squash, cabbages, beans, broccoli, cauliflower, dark leaf greens like kale & chard, radicchio, lettuces, pepper, and we’re still picking tomatoes (12 heirloom varieties)! Plus all the wild mushroom & truffles we are foraging for. We are also growing solfino – an almost extinct bean originally from this Region of Italy – we are one of a very few farms trying to bring the bean back!
TT: What is your favorite dish on your current menu?
CB: Porcini Risotto from the mushrooms we’ve picked in our back woods.
TT: In addition to having a garden, you make your own charcuterie, liquors, and wines. What prompted you to take on these projects also?
CB: We want to share as many of the local, seasonal recipes of our area before they are lost. We believe in slow food and continuing those old way traditions, we are very proud of this.
TT: As you make charcuterie, do you raise the livestock for that?
CB: We raise 20 hens and roosters. For our charcuterie we use pork from a neighbor’s farm, however this spring we plan on building a pig-stall and raising two pigs of our own!
TT: Do you do your own baking or do you source that from a local bakery?
CB: We do it all in-house! The pasta is from scratch made from the eggs of our chickens and flour milled from the fields surrounding our farmhouse, so baking is the same!
TT: What makes La Tavola Marche unique?
CB: We are two American expats that are continuing the peasant traditions and recipes from rural Central Italy. We grew up in the big city, lived in New York, but found a more fulfilled life growing our own food, living simply and seasonally and sharing that with our guests!